Voting Rights

Mission/Purpose

  1. To protect the right and access to voting for all citizens. We will seek congregational support for voting rights efforts with education, witness and advocacy programs.
  2. To ensure that votes cast are counted and reported accurately. We will recruit members to be trained as election audit/review (recount) observers in Minnesota and participate in the national campaign for voter verifiable paper ballots and mandatory audits in all fifty states.

 

National Popular Vote

There has been a lot of discussion in the local press recently about National Popular Vote (NPV), but you should know that the leaders of MUUSJA's Voting Rights group are strongly opposed to this concept.  Watch for a program to discuss this complicated issue in the coming months. An outline of the issue is below.
 
What is NPV?  An interstate compact that effectively controls the Electoral College by having states commit to allocating their Presidential electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote.

Who supports NPV? The concept has been endorsed by several progressive organizations but we believe that support will not hold up to serious scrutiny. The issue is much like Voter ID that seems reasonable on the surface, but is much more complex with serious, negative consequences.
Why oppose NPV?

Untrustworthy States: Other states do not have the verifiable, transparent, accurate elections we have in Minnesota.  Until they do, we believe that Minnesota should not change the allocation of our Presidential electoral votes to align with states determined by dubious election systems. NPV would mean that unlawful activity like intimidation or false challenging could be anywhere, widely dispersed, not just concentrated in a few swing states, making it much harder to monitor and protect against.

Provisional Ballots: Other states have millions of provisional ballots that are never counted for various reasons. Typically, they would not change the allocation of the state electoral votes but the total number nationally is sometimes greater than the margin of victory in the national popular vote. Uncounted absentee ballots would also be challenged, vote by vote.  All uncounted ballots would be contested with NPV, creating reviews and court cases that would be very difficult to resolve quickly. 

Recounts: Minnesotans know better than most about close elections and recounts, and we do them well.  However, there are no provisions for how to handle close elections with NPV.  Any recounts would be based on individual state law, which his highly variable. A national recount, with the millions of uncounted ballots, and lawsuits in various states could increase the likelihood of the courts deciding elections, not reduce it.
 
Read more.
 http://www.startribune.com/opinion/commentaries/253830551.html
 

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